Former Iraqi dictator Saddam
Hussein speaks to Judge Rizgar Mohammed Amin as his trial on November
28. Iraqis have asked Saddam Hussein's defence team to mull the possibility
of fielding the ousted dictator as a candidate for future elections.(AFP/File/Bob
Iraqis have asked Saddam Hussein's defence team to mull the possibility
of fielding the ousted dictator as a candidate for future elections, according
to one of his lawyers.
"Iraqis have asked the defence team to study the legal conditions
to present Saddam Hussein as a candidate for elections, first as an MP then
as president," Jordan's Al-Dustour daily quoted former Qatari justice minister
Najib al-Nuaimi as saying.
"If this contradicts the legal system then president Saddam will
be nominated simply as a candidate," he said Wednesday, without specifying
if Saddam could try to run in the December 15 election.
Nuaimi is among three foreign lawyers along with former US attorney general
Ramsey Clark and Jordanian lawyer Issam Ghazzawi who were sworn in by the Iraqi
court as members of Saddam's defence at Monday's hearing.
Asked by AFP about Nuaimi's reported remarks, Ghazzawi said: "As we were
leaving Iraq on Tuesday ordinary Iraqis at the airport approached us saying
they wished that Saddam would return (as president)."
"These Iraqis said 'we have lost security after Saddam, how we wish he
would return'," Ghazzawi said.
The defence team considers Saddam, who was ousted by a US-led invasion force
in April 2003, as Iraq's "legitimate president".
As the trial of Saddam and seven co-defendants accused of charges against humanity
resumed Monday in Baghdad some 500 people demonstrated in his hometown of Tikrit
in support of the former dictator.
Protestors dismissed the trial as unfair, hailed Saddam as Iraq's "legitimate
president" and poured scorn on the Shiite-dominated government of Iraqi
Prime Minister Ibrahim Jaafari .
Saddam and his co-accused have pleaded not guilty to charges of murder and
torture related to a massacre of Shiites that followed a botched assassination
attempt against him in the town of Dujail in 1982.
Saddam and the other defendants could face the death penalty if convicted